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Historic Sites

Ruins of St. Paul's
The most famous sight in Macau. The original church was probably designed by an Italian Jesuit in the early 17th century and it was built with the assistance of Japanese Christian artisans who had fled from feudal persecution in Nagasaki. In 1835, the church and its adjacent college caught fire and burned to the ground leaving only the facade, the staircase and a few portions of the walls.

In 1996 a religious museum was opened in the excavated crypt of the church. It contains the tomb of the Jesuit missionary Valignano, bones of Japanese and Vietnamese martyrs, a model of the original church and some 17th century works of religious art.

Monte Fort & Museum of Macau
Built by the Jesuits about the same time as St. Paul's, in the early part of the 17th century, Monte Fort was only half completed in 1622 when a Dutch fleet attacked Macau. A cannon ball fired by defenders in the fort blew up the enemy's gunpowder supply and saved the city. The fort was later used as the governor's residence and then army barracks, when it was destroyed, with St Paul's, by fire in 1835.

Today it houses the Museum of Macau, which occupies the foundations and platform of the fort. Exhibits illustrate the life of Macau and its people over the past four centuries,emphasising the bi-cultural character of the city and the traditions of Eastand West that continue to shape its society.

The museum is open 10am to 6pm daily, except Mondays, Admission is MOP$15 for adults, MOP$8 for children under 11 & senior citizens over 60, 50% discount for official institutions groups & schools.

The fort's platform provides an excellent lookout over the city and is accessible by the old gateway. It is open, admission-free, 6:OOam to 7:OOpm May to September and 7:OOam to 6:OOpm October to April.

Fort of Mong Ha
Located on top of Mong Ha hill, overlooking the border with Mainland China the fort was built in 1849 with massive walls that were considered impregnable. In recent years, the grounds of the old fort has been converted into a tourism complex, officialy designated by Institute For Tourism Studies (IFT), which comprises of a pousada to accommodate official visitors, a student-staffed restaurant and a modern Tourism College, together with a public park and playgournd.

Pousada de Sao Tiago
A Portuguese inn, constructed in traditional style and using hand-crafted decorative features, within the walls of the 17th century Fortaleza de Sao Tiago. The Pousada received a Special Commendation in the Pacific Area Travel Association's heritage competition in 1982.

Dom Pedro V Theatre
Located on "Largo de Sto. Agostinho", opposite St. Augustine's Church, the theatre is a colonnaded building constructed in the grand neoclassical manner. There is a large entrance hall with an elegant chandelier, and the doors are swept by red velvet curtains. The theatre itself is roughly oval with a balcony round the upper part of the auditorium, and is intimate in its proportions. The stage is rather narrow but deep. The feeling of exclusiveness created by its size is emphasized by the plush velvet seats and the general touches of extravagance, such as the cut-glass door handles and chandeliers. It is a superb setting for the occasional play or opera produced in Macau, and such artists since World War II as Helen Traubel, Peter Pears and Ruggiero Ricci have appeared on its stage. The famous Crazy Paris Show was first held at this theatre for almost 7 years.


Barrier Gate (Portas do Cerco)
Situated at the northern most point of Macau, the stone gate that traditionally marked the border with China is now maintained in a small park. It was erected in 1870 and is inscribed with a quotation from Camoes: 'Honour your country for your country is watching you", Today's travellers use the modern buildings on either side, which house immigration, customs and tourist information offices. The border is open from 7am to midnight.

Guia Fortress, Chapel & Lighthouse
A small chapel was first built in the 17th century as part of the Guia Fortress and the present chapel dates from 1637. During the restoration of the chapel in 1996, the oldest vestige of mural paintings that dates back to the construction of the hermitage in 1622 were discovered. The recovered paintings are characterized by rich cultural meaning, a combination of Chinese and Western symbols, including angels wearing traditional oriental costumes.

The Lighthouse was the first on the China Coast, built by a local born Portuguese, Carlos Vicente da Rocha.

Below Guia Hill is the Flora Garden, which can be reached by steps or a cable car that takes visitors to street level in just 80 seconds.

Provisional Municipal Council of Macau (ex-Leal Senado)
The building is regarded as the most outstanding example of Portuguese architecture in the territory. A public library is located on the first floor and its two inner chambers contain magnificent examples of the institution at Coimbra, in Portugal.

Largo do Senado Square
The 3700m, Largo do Senado square is a newly paved with a wavepatterned mosaic of coloured stones, created by Portuguese experts. From the main road to the church of St. Dominic, the pavement extends to the ruins of St. Paul's, making the heart of the city a pedestrian paradise.

Old Protestant Cemetery
Among those buried here: Dr. Robert Morrison, who compiled the first English and Chinese dictionary and translated the Bible into Chinese; George Chinnery, an artist who lived in Macau in the 18th century; Capt. Lord John Spencer Churchill, Commander of H.M. Ship Druid and an ancestor of Sir Winston Churchill; also seamen and non-Portuguese Traders.

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